Falcons sign RB Steven Jackson
MAR 14, 2013 4:54p ET
The contract is a three-year deal, according to the team's official Twitter feed.
In the last three days, the Falcons have agreed to terms with Gonzalez, the future hall of fame tight end who, instead of retiring, chose to return to the team that lost in the NFC Championship Game 28-24 to San Francisco, and now add Jackson to their arsenal.
Gonzalez nick-named the offense for its variety of weapons, as defenses must choose whether to double-team him or wide receivers Roddy White or Julio Jones, always leaving one in single coverage. Last season running back Michael Turner, formerly one of the league's best, saw his production fall to a career low of 3.6 yards per carry.
In Jackson, they get a running back who remains highly productive. In nine seasons Jackson has averaged 4.2 yards per carry on 2,395 attempts. Where he might be an excellent fit for the Falcons, though, is that he has caught 407 passes for 3,324 yards, especially since the Falcons have become a pass-first team. Turner struggled to make that adjustment and was not much of a pass-catcher.
Jackson has been durable, missing only 13 games in his career. Despite all of that wear-and-tear, he has not shown signs of slowing down, as his yards-per-carry and receiving yards-per-catch were higher last season than in 2010.
He has not played in the postseason since his rookie season of 2004 and he could want to be on a team like the Falcons, much like Gonzalez did in 2009. "But it's more at this point of my career, (I) want to be a part of something, chasing a Lombardi Trophy," he told SiriusXM NFL Radio recently.